Oh, wouldn’t you know it. The last match indoors this term; this final chance to lift home spirits that have all been too often left flagging over the last nine months. Let’s face it, we aren’t now plundering the depths of umpteenth in the League Two table for nothing. Now, storming through the ‘Nidge like their name’s El Niño, come an expectant Exeter side. A win for them and automatic promotion could be a thing.
On day release from Sid James’ Park, the Grecians are the gristly shit meat in-between the two slices of past-the-use-by bread of our final three matches; all involving promotion botherers. It makes you hark back to our unbeaten (yet distraughtly unspectacular) start to the season. How we thought we were on the same course when it all got underway in August when Newport dropped in. Maybe not, then, as things have panned out.
Stevenage v Exeter City: The Lowdown
P24 W4 D9 L11 F26 A34; last result: Stevenage 3-0 Wycombe Wanderers, 11/02/2017
At some point during this fixture, Dean Whitestone is the man you may find yourself accusing of not knowing what he’s doing. Only time will tell on that front. But he’s as familiar a face in the middle as we could want to meet; on 24 occasions, he’s overseen our affairs. And this is the third time he’s done Stevenage v Exeter City! The first going in our favour; the second not so much. A draw would technically complete the set, right?
P21 W5 D8 L8 F18 A28; last result: Exeter City 2-1 Stevenage, 16/12/2017
It might have gone unnoticed below the headlines about tents and goats named after Gary Lineker, but Dino Maamria told the Times his favourite ever goal came against Exeter City. It was said, likely off the back of his own recollection, that he’d come off the bench and scored a brace – one an overhead kick – as we clawed our way back from a two-goal deficit to draw 2-2 in 2005.
It’s partially true. He did come off the bench versus Exeter. He did bag a brace. And one of those golazos was quite the stunner. But he did a slight disservice to us. His goals brought us back from 2-1 down to win 3-2. Oh Dino, we’re right behind you; but we’re also hot on factageddons. It’s kinda what we do. And it’s at this stage we clock we haven’t said *anything* about them. They’ve not lost in six against us. Roll eyes and continue.
If you came here looking for some form of comfort, we really do must laugh in your face. Our current form is neither here nor there; about as indifferent as a mute aardvark living in a Gdansk pied-à-terre. Our guests, meanwhile, are fifth best in League Two over the past six matches; fourth best if the last 10 is your preferred arbitrary sample. It’s worth noting, however, that we sit below Barnet in the form table right now. Yikes!!
On closer inspection, this is the raw data. The Grecians haven’t failed to score in nine games, scoring in 82 per cent of their away days this season. That’s half decent, eh? In each of their last seven journeys, they’ve scored. To be fair, they’ve also let in at least one in each of their last seven. Overall, then, the stats suggest this could end up being their leg up into the automatic promotion spots. That’s where the money will be going.
And it’d also be at the expense of Wycombe, who we go to for next week’s finale. The plot thickens. Slightly…
• BoroGuide’s Exeter City club profile – it can do every which way but loose…